Gina Hyams Author

Monthly Archives: December 2008

Bailey the Unknown Reindeer

Christmas Day 2008




Real Icicles

Our living room window. Christmas Eve 2008.

Now I understand why Dave thinks the plastic Christmas icicles that people decorate their houses with in California are tacky.

Gina’s Blogging Boot Camp in Mexico

Casa Sierra Negra del Sur

I’m pleased to announce that I’ll be teaching a one-day Blogging Boot Camp in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico on Friday, February 20, 2009, 10am to 2pm at Casa Sierra Negra del Sur (Black Mountain South House…i.e. the fabulous Hyams-Barrett family compound).

Topics: Nuts and bolts how-to with helpful hand-outs galore, super savvy marketing tips, and oodles of creative inspiration to keep you fired up and cranking out compelling blog posts. I’ll also reveal the meta and mini blog mysteries that are Facebook and Twitter.

$65 (includes snacks!)

To sign up, please send a note to ginahyams@gmail.com.

First Snow

Here’s what Goose and I saw this morning as we walked down the driveway to fetch the paper.

Eight or so inches of snow.

Our house and barn.

Campfire circle in the woods.

Plowed driveway entrance.

Mexican Wrestler Christmas Ornament

Happy holidays from Los Hyams-Barrett

Dos Mujeres Mexican Folk Art carries a slew of wonderful Mexican tin ornaments including this one.

R.I.P. Lucky Green Glasses

My glasses frames sprouted an irreparable crack over the weekend. I called Dave from the Petco parking lot in Pittsfield to report the sad news. He tried to comfort me with “honey, you are more than your glasses,” but I wasn’t so sure. These weren’t just any glasses. They were the best glasses in the history of glasses, or at least the history of my face and glasses.

I found them at Next Eyewear on College Avenue in Oakland six or seven years ago. As I recall, I didn’t really need new glasses at the time and I was broke as usual, but when I tried them on, there was something so extraordinarily right about them, so me only better best self about them, that I whipped out my credit card with the justification: no one will deny me if I’m wearing these glasses…which actually more or less proved true, plus they generated an incredible amount of good will and conversation.

Literally hundreds of strangers, from all walks of life and of all races, thought enough of my glasses to stop me on the street or on the bus or in the spa locker room to compliment me about them. Society matrons. Homeless men. Hip baristas from coast to coast. These glasses helped me learn to graciously accept a compliment. I’d smile like I’d never heard it before, look the person in the eye, and offer a sincere thank you in return.

It’s hard to say what exactly made these glasses compelling to such a wide range of people. All I know about their origin is that they were French and one of a kind. There’s no label on the frames. I just sent the above photo to Next Eyewear hoping that someone there will recognize the designer.

The glasses were subtly spectacular. They did a slow burn. When they caught people’s attention, the design somehow made them look closer. The liquid green pattern, the not quite cat’s eye shape, and the flirty black rhinestones combined with the feng shui of my face in a mysterious way that compelled people to talk to me.

I’m not a particularly fashionable or put-together person and sometimes the compliments felt like compassion…like the people thought: damn that geeky girl got something right, let’s prop her up and celebrate.

These glasses let me walk into any room and know that even though I might not be the smartest or the prettiest or the best writer or the most patient mother, odds were I’d have the best glasses. I will miss that power.

R.I.P. Lucky Green Sweater

Looking through a folder of old digital photos this evening, I stumbled on this shot of Susan, Anne, and me celebrating the almost-sale of Searching for Mary Poppins and S’s and my 40th birthdays at Tabla in New York. I’m wearing the fabled lucky green sweater, which will soon be transformed into a keepsake felted something thanks to Kari of Chixon.

Dave's Festive Phallic Holiday Lights

A change of pace from our neighbors’ winter berry-trimmed wreaths, inflatable snow globes, life-sized manger scenes, and flickering no-room-at-the-inn candles in windows, eh?

Sol LeWitt at Mass MoCA

Photo by Erik Jacobs for The New York Times

Sol LeWitt: A Wall Drawing Retrospective recently opened at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art. I haven’t yet had a chance to trek to North Adams to see the spectacle, but fortunately the exhibit will remain up for 25 years. Here’s a link to a New York Times article about it.

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